Odd behavior after power outage

Rachio 3 18zone working flawlessly for 1 year. Through numerours power outages.

Power outage occurs. Power back online. Rachio turns on and returns to normal scheduling but can’t connect to server. App says can’t connect to Rachio. I check router and sure enough, rachio unit shows connected with no issues.

24 hours go by, still can’t connect. I notice 3rd quadrant flashes red. I read that this means it’s connected to wifi, but can’t reach Rachio server. Recommended to restart Rachio. Didn’t work. Assigned it a static IP address. Didn’t work. Restarted router, modem. Didn’t work. My firewall settings have not changed and therefore that should not be the issue. At this point thankfully the Rachio is still running its stored schedules so my plants get their water, thankfully.

At this point next recommended step is to reset wifi on device. Hold wifi button and reconnect using app. Does not work. Now sprinkler is in weird state where it is stuck in a loop:

  1. First quadrant flash white a couple of times
  2. Run zone 7 for 30 seconds (flashing blue on 7 and water running)
  3. All lights off
  4. Repeat
    At this point only zone 7 is getting water, no other plants getting water. Surely it can’t get any worse…

At this point next recommended step is to factory reset. Okay, I reset the device. Now device will not get past first quadrant on boot. Flashes red. Power-cycled device. Same result. No zones are being watered now.

Thanks to Rachio troubleshooting guide I have taken a near-fully functioning unit and made it useless. Unacceptable.

When I say restart/power cycle I mean unplug for 30 seconds and hold a button to drain residual power.

What is going on? How can I fix it? My plants and grass need water!! Thank you.


I’d recommend calling Rachio support or using the chat feature.

Thanks for the reply. What is the support phone number?

@PatagonianDuck - From a post by Dane:

Update 2023-08-03

Called Rachio at 1-844-472-2446

5 minutes later they said they will send a replacement unit for free, within 5 business days. Required original invoice, serial number, and barcode. Reminder that warranty for these is 2 years.

I asked what the new warranty will be on the replacement unit. She said unfortunately it will still have the same warranty of the old unit (not a new 2 year period) This is unacceptable. Hopefully when this new unit fails I am still within warranty, otherwise I will be abandoning the Rachio system for a better product. Maybe a better irrigation controller like Hunt3r Hydrawiz3 who I hope will not treat their customers this poorly.

Oh well, an expensive lesson learned from Rachio. Please, for anyone reading this, stay away.

1 Like

Sorry about your experience. I do not think that most people have this kind of experience. If this was caused by the power outage, I might consider making use of a surge protector. Any kind of electronic potentially can be fried with the spikes that happen from outages.

Thanks for your condolences. I’m hesitant to think that a power spike caused this, but I can’t rule it out. I’m a bit more disappointed that Rachio’s own troubleshooting steps bricked my unit, but again that could be attributed to a power spike or some ESD event.

Regardless, that’s good advice. I have an extra tripp-lite isobar that I will use here. My mistake for not using one beforehand. Crossing my fingers that if anything else occurs, it occurs in my shortened warranty period :frowning:

2023-08-03 update: 6 hours after my support call with Rachio they have shipped me a new unit. Not bad!

Glad they shipped so quickly. I hope the isobar and new unit lasts for a long time.

Good to see rachio has quick warranty process… 5 day turn around and free shipping… and still have the remainder of your 2 year warranty. Did they ask to have you send the unit you purchased back to them and you pay the shipping?

FYI, this is how warranty works for a vast majority of manufacturers out there, regardless of the item produced. Heck, for many, warranty replacement is a one and done situation. Once you execute a warranty exchange, they wash their hands of the warranty completely.

Regardless of industry standards for warranties, my mistake was assuming the premium pricetag of the Rachio meant premium experience, not average. New unit, new warranty… I’m assuming they expect the same thing to happen again, leaving me the customer with no recourse. At least that’s what is being communicated.

The new unit is slated for delivery tomorrow. Total 48 hours from support call to new unit in my hands… potentially. Will update once it arrives. I assume they are rushing these out because of the heat? Either way, good hustle from the Rachio team.

That short delivery time is amazing. How many companies will do that unless you pay for expedited shipping… It’s always good to have a plan “B” in case a water valvue, sprinkler head fails, and etc. My plan “B” is multiple garden hoses.

Just received my rachio 3 yesterday and will not install it without an adequate surge protector.

I have a $3k under counter icemaker in my newly remodeled kitchen that is being replaced under warranty after numerous attempts to fix. My warranty going forward is still based on the purchase date of the original unit, not from the date of when my replacement gets installed…so my brand new unit will have less than 1 year “remaining” on its warranty.

Premium or not, it’s common practice.

But love hearing the quick turnaround time on the unit! Hopefully the swap out goes without issue!


@Thomas_Lerman summed it up perfectly. Being a Pro Installer and licensed contractor I always recommend and install a surge protector indoors, and always have always installed this way after encountering my first electrical storm, and transformer spike rendering a controller useless… or installing a required GFCI outdoors for those reasons in addition to warranty my service and installation.

Foremost for the protection of the device and the clients equipment and investment and long term usage and enjoyment of using a better product than they originally had for future water conservation management and landscape value. Having a quality Trip Lite Isobar your a head of the game.

Two years ago, I replaced a half dozen Gen 3’s that got fried & “bricked” do to Utilities companies voltage spikes surpassing whole house surge protection. To say I was shocked was quite eye opening. Granted these were in remote Canyon locations, but even with layered surge protection the end use electrical components take the brunt.
Installing the Pro Version product seems to be more refined, with better connectivity, proper terminals, and a 4 year warranty.

Rachio’s customers service has a larger platform for support than any other professional irrigation controller manufacture. After reading additional posts it looks like you’ve found your remedy and hopeful for great future experiences. To do a service call with a third Red light is always disappointing but bringing the service up to code with proper grounding and surge protection is always a benefit for the client and the safety of the environment as well. Happy Days!

Are you saying extra protection is not needed if on a GFÇI? If not, recommended protection?

Link may help… Is GFCI and Surge Protector the Same?

I did not think they were the same, but it kind of sounded like @ProWater was saying that. I may have misunderstood.